2007/08 Support Budget

Budget Challenges: One-Time Budget Augmentations, $50 Million

Information Technology Funding, $25 Million

Students looking at papers on a boardSince 1996, the CSU has based all of its technology expenditures on the Integrated Technology Strategy (ITS) framework. The vision of the ITS is that students, faculty, and staff have anytime, anywhere access to the electronic resources with which they must interact in their roles as learners, scholars/teachers, and knowledge workers.

A cornerstone of the ITS framework is the development and regular maintenance (refresh) of what constitutes a baseline level of support in each of the components of the IT infrastructure. Several years of budget reductions forced the CSU to modify spending on what was established as a baseline. In Budget Act language, the CSU was directed to minimize the impact of budget cuts on current instructional offerings. Consequently, funds were redirected away from information technology purchases, and the CSU fell further behind on the refresh cycle for key infrastructure components, such as workstations and servers, and in the development and maintenance of a critical component of academic technology—smart classrooms.

In 2005, the CSU conducted a comprehensive internal study to identify expenditures for all aspects of information technology and to determine what funding shortfalls existed, particularly in the area of technologies to support the educational mission of the university. The study team identified four major categories of unmet information technology needs, where campuses were not able to achieve the minimum baseline standards for access and quality due to a lack of funding. These categories included baseline needs within the existing ITS framework (workstations, servers, technical support, and security); new or emerging baseline needs (middleware, wireless networks, and SB 302 compliance); core academic technology needs on the campuses today (Learning Management Systems, instructional design staff, smart classrooms, and electronic content); and emerging academic technology needs stemming from the new systemwide initiatives. The team determined that approximately $81 million in one-time funding is needed to bring the campuses to the CSU’s minimum baseline standard. An additional $117 million per year is required to maintain the baseline. This excludes middleware (authentication, identity management, network security), which are areas still under study with costs yet to be determined.

This $25 million request will focus on three areas where a one-time investment in the ITS framework will have the highest potential to favorably impact the teaching and learning process, and where reduced spending has had the most negative impact. These areas and the requested one-time funding amounts are workstation refresh ($11.2 million), server refresh ($3.4 million), and smart classrooms ($10.4 million).

Computer workstations are an integral and essential part of the way in which faculty teach, students learn, and staff perform the functions associated with the management and administration of the institution. For example, faculty must be able to access students’ class sections or academic process in order to advise them on course sections they need to graduate in a timely manner. Staff must be able to access student financial aid information in an effort to process a student’s financial aid grants or loans. All of this depends upon computer workstations that are up-to-date and reliable. A threeyear refresh cycle ensures that the university has equipment that can be readily maintained and is capable of handling current software.

  • A server is a computer that provides services to other computers. For example, a server can store information created by a number of different people within a department and make that information available to the entire department or a defined subset. Servers are also used to house and provide access to large-scale applications, such as electronic mail, calendaring, and large, complex databases that can not be efficiently or effectively managed on individual workstations. As with workstations, servers must be refreshed every three years.
  • A “smart classroom” is defined as one that is permanently equipped with screen/monitor(s); a projector; network connections to voice, video, and data; and computer workstation(s) or provisions to connect a laptop computer. The need to equip classrooms for instruction that employs network resources and multimedia presentations has grown with the increased availability of technology-mediated instructional materials and with greater reliance on Web-based learning activities.

The requested one-time funds will help close the gap created by several years of systemic budget shortages. These funds will position the CSU to keep pace with the refresh cycle associated with providing faculty, staff, and student workstations, servers, and classroom spaces that are equipped to take advantage of the wealth of digital content for teaching and learning.

Deferred Maintenance, $25 Million

The facilities of the 23 campuses of the CSU plus the Office of the Chancellor constitute over 40 million gross square feet (GSF) of state-funded space and nearly 20 million GSF of nonstate-funded facilities. A snapshot of the CSU’s capital facilities is provided in the table below:

  Number of State Funded Facilities GSF of State Funded Facilities Number of Nonstate Funded Facilities GSF of Nonstate Funded Facilities Total Number of Facilities Total
GSF
of Facilities
Less than 30 years old 539 16,253,875 202 12,509,097 741 28,762,972
30-50 years old 450 20,077,265 130 6,279,901 580 26,357,166
Greater than 50 years old 327 4,084,135 40 509,338 367 4,593,473
Total 1,316 40,415,275 372 19,298,336 1,688 59,713,611

A substantial number of CSU facilities were built in the period from the late 1950s through the mid- 1960s. In 1974, the CSU began tracking deferred maintenance, replacement, and renewal costs. In 1995, this data was incorporated into a Facilities Replacement Renewal Model (FRRM) for the CSU, based on a similar model developed for the UC. In 2006/07, the CSU conservatively estimated a systemwide deferred maintenance backlog of over $400 million.

Since receiving approval from the Department of Finance, the CSU has been able to include a Capital Renewal Program for capital infrastructure and Group I equipment as a component of the CSU Capital Outlay Program. The Capital Renewal Program is envisioned to range from $25 million to $50 million annually and has helped address campus priorities to replace systems to reduce the amount of deferred maintenance. But the Capital Renewal Program by itself is insufficient to address the CSU’s backlog of deferred maintenance needs. If the CSU is to adequately maintain the state’s investments in capital facilities and infrastructure, additional funds will be needed to meet the documented need.

This one-time funding request of $25 million will help the CSU address the outstanding deferred maintenance backlog and support the CSU’s commitment to increasing its maintenance budgets to provide safe, functional, and efficiently operating buildings to serve its students, faculty, and staff.


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Budget Development
Chris Canfield
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Last Updated: February 05, 2007